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Rain frustrates Cheshire

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Chesire and Oxfordshire were forced to settle for a draw after heavy rain meant there was no play on the final day of their MCCA Championship clash.

Oxfordshire, the hosts, were due to resume 45 runs ahead with nine wickets remaining, but the bad weather meant both sides had to accept 11 points each in their opening three-day clash of the season.

Oxton batsman Lee Dixon was Cheshire's star performer with a brilliant debut century, his innings of 169 the highlight of a frustrating Western Division match.

Skipper Andy Hall contributed 48 to a record county seventh-wicket partnership of 170, while promising Neston seamer James Hawley weighed in with three first-innings wickets.

"It's a shame the last day was rained off, but there's nothing you can do about the weather," reflected Hall.

"I've played in enough games now to know that the rain can spoil the day, but I thought we showed lots of character in this game having been in trouble at stages.

"We were in real danger of being bowled out cheaply in our first innings, but Lee Dixon made a great knock and we hit back well to get a first-innings lead.

"We've made a solid start. Hopefully the weather won't prevent us from trying to get a win against Wiltshire in our next three-day match."

Meanwhile, Cheshire head to Grantham CC on Sunday to face Lincolnshire in the quarter-finals of the MCCA Trophy.

Two more victories in the competition would see Cheshire progress to their second final in four seasons, with this year's final being played at the Emirates Durham ICG on August 11.

"We're all looking forward to the match," added Hall. "Lincolnshire are a strong team, but we're confident we can win if we play well.”